Fabulous Compost

October 21, 2012

I learned that we are supposed to strive to have 5% of our soil be compost.  In order to do that we can spread about a half-inch of compost over 10 inches deep of soil and that comes pretty close.  My compost has been ready to spread for a while, but I was finally motivated to do it now before starting to make new compost with all the fall leaves.  I needed Dan’s help, too!

First Dan removed the recently collected mulched leaves and organic material from the pile and put it on the sidewalk.  Then he dug out about a foot of rich dark compost and spread it around the garden, after we had cleared it of most of this year’s vegetable plants.  Then we sowed winter rye into the soil to see if we could get a cover crop to germinate this late in the season.  This is the first time I am trying a cover crop.

We wanted to expand our vegetable garden a few feet, so I put down wet newspapers and then we spread mulched leaves over the top to make lasagna mulch.  We took the hose and sprayed water on the leaves and on the winter rye seeds.  I also planted some lettuce and spinach seeds a while ago, but only a few of those have sprouted.

The grasshopper was still alive and watching the action from the kale.  We still have a lot of kale in the garden.  We have an artichoke plant that is still alive along with the rhubarb, herbs, onions and shallots.

pink chrysanthemums

Chrysanthemum ‘fantasy’ is the last mum to bloom in my garden.  The wood is weak and last week I saw branches had broken off the plant, so I brought them inside and they opened up in the warmth.  These mums are starting to bloom outside, too.

I put pineapple sage in a planter this year.  The hummingbirds like these flowers, though they bloomed quite late, so I have not seen hummingbirds on them this year.

Asters with russian sage in the background.  The russian sage and the goldenrod are pretty tired colorwise, but they still have structure and height.

On my birthday I harvested these strawberries, tomato and beans.  I have had a few more strawberries since then.  I brought green tomatoes in a few weeks ago and I had given up on them ripening, but today I see that they are turning yellow.


3 Responses to “Fabulous Compost”

  1. I especially enjoyed the info about spreading compost in the fall.

  2. Hugh said

    Was interested in your comments about the Mum ‘Fantasy’. Looking for confirmation, I went to https://www.rhs.org.uk/Plants/242985/Chrysanthemum-Fantasy/Details which showed an entirely different plant.

    • Hi there – I bought my mums online from King’s Mums, a family business in Oregon City, OR. I think they developed their own varieties and gave them their own names. I did not see any scientific name listed. That is the challenge of comparing common names of flowers, I guess!

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